timberland boots aren’t exactly dancing shoes. They’re, well … boots. And while the brand didn’t invent the lug sole or the nubuck upper, it essentially owns that space now, shaping icons through its 6″ Boots and Field Boots. The styles are staples in any working environment from the field to a construction site, but they’re just as at home on the street—which has made them an indispensable part of the cultures that rise from those communities.
But this relationship gets a little complicated when one of those cultures is, say, hip-hop dancing.
One of the most recognizable hip-hop dancers in the world, tWitch, can be seen on no fewer than five seasons of So You Think You Can Dance, behind the DJ table for Ellenon any given week, and in Magic Mike XXL. He can also often be seen wearing Timberlands—and not just off duty. He wears them to dance, despite the fact that it hasn’t always been a comfortable experience.
Not that there’s any reason it should be. Timberland boots are rugged, heavy, robust; they’re made to stand up against not only the elements but whatever abuse the wearer puts them through. Whether lined in sheepskin or done up with a protective steel toe, these are work boots. And yet, tWtich opts for them time and time again.
Timberland is a brand that understands the space it lives in, and this season it’s introducing a whole new line of product, SensorFlex—launched by tWitch along with other dancers like So You Think You Can Dance‘s Virgil Gadson—which brings a sneaker-like sole to Timberland boots. The new sole unit is flexible and cushioned, and was created to respond to the needs of any wearer, including dancers.
“These hold up because they are incredibly lightweight,” says tWitch. “Just to test them out, I’ve danced in them a lot. There’s nothing like perfect dancing shoes—a shoe that’s going to hold up to everything that we’re going put it through. And so far, it’s dope. It’s super, super light. It’s super crazy.”